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Durham startup nets $350,000 in seed money

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Windsor Circle, a fledgling Durham company that raised $350,000 in seed funding earlier this month, today announced the release of its first product for online retailers.

The six-month-old company has launched what it is calling the "Early Access" version of its eCommerce Intelligence Software, which is designed to help online retailers boost revenue from email marketing campaigns.

Unlike a beta version that may not be fully functional, Windsor's "Early Access" version is a finished product but availability is limited to ensure that the start-up can provide sufficient customer support, said Brad McGinity, vice president of sales and marketing. The company's plan is to limit access until Aug. 31.

Windsor Circle's eCommerce product enables online retailers to integrate customer purchase data with their e-mail marketing efforts, so that they can send out e-mails that match customers' interests. The eCommerce software also creates various customer segments, such as recent buyers, big spenders and wealthy customers.

Windsor Circle's software is currently compatible with several e-mail marketing providers and is quickly expanding to incorporate others. The company also has struck marketing partnerships with several companies, including Triangle-based e-mail marketing companies iContact and Bronto Software.

Windsor Circle, which just hired its sixth employee, is led by co-founder and CEO Matt Williamson, who previously was vice president of sales at Bronto.

The company recently received $350,000 in funding. Its backers in that seed round included Durham venture capital fund IDEA Fund Partners and Tom McMurray, a former partner at Sequoia Partners, one of Silicon Valley's most successful venture capital firms.

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About the blogger

David Ranii has been a business reporter at The News & Observer since 1993. Over the years he has covered information technology, banking, insurance, the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, media businesses and real estate. Contact him at 919-829-4877 or e-mail him.
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